McKinley is a great unisex baby name that is evenly split between boys and girls dependent on culture. The name originated from a nickname for Vikings in Scotland that eventually became a surname. Despite being around since the Viking invasions, however, it has only been a top 1,000 name for the last decade.

Meaning of the name McKinley:

Scottish: son of the fair hero, fair-haired foreigner

Origin of the name McKinley:

The baby name McKinley began as a Scottish surname. In Gaelic, the name was Mac Fhionnlaigh. This name, when English became more popular, translated to McKinley.

Symbolism of the name McKinley:

The surname Mac Fhionnlaigh translates to “son of Fionn Ghall” or “son of Fionnlagh.” In the early days of Scotland, there were Viking invaders who were fair-haired, and Fionnlagh or Fionn Ghall became the nicknames for these invaders in the country.

Style of the name McKinley:


Gender of the name McKinley:

McKinley is a name for boys and girls. It is more commonly used as a baby name for boys in Scotland and one for girls in America.

Pronunciation of the name McKinley:


Number of syllables in the name McKinley:


Emotion evoked from the name McKinley:

McKinley is a young-sounding name that is lighthearted and fun. This is ironic of the darker origins that the surname had.

Alternative spellings for the name McKinley:

  • MacKinley
  • MacKinlee
  • McKinlee
  • Makinleigh
  • MacKinleigh
  • McKinleigh
  • McKinly
  • MacKinly

Nicknames for the name McKinley:

Popularity of the name McKinley:

Though around as a surname for centuries, McKinley did not become a top 1,000 name until 2006 at rank 953. It was a top 400 name from 2013 to 2015, but now, it is a top 600 name again. In 2020, McKinley was rank 555.

Related names for the name McKinley:

Great middle names for McKinley and their meanings:

Famous people with the name McKinley:

  • McKinley Morganfield (real name of Muddy Waters, bluegrass musician)
  • McKinley Belcher III (actor, “Ozark”)

McKinleys in popular culture:

  • McKinley Thompson (character in “Breaking Point”)